Eight Days

It feels like we’ve had him for five years. It’s only been eight days.

I have grave concerns. One of the Executive Orders signed by President Trump on Friday essentially amounts to the promised Muslim ban. It should be well noted here that Mr Trump has been clear that Christians will be prioritized. Now, for the first time in our history, religion is a test of immigration. In addition, the seven countries listed have no confirmed ties to terrorism… yet. What keeps me tossing and turning at night these last two nights is wondering how many terrorists have been created by this EO. If I’m sitting in one of these countries what am I supposed to think other than the US hates me? You’re going to tell me that based on my religion alone, I’m more likely to become a terrorist and kill your people? Statistics show I am more likely to kill people in this country than a Muslim. Ignorance – people fear what they don’t understand or refuse to see.

What seems to be occurring is emotional reaction on the part of this administration. Instead of determining what is hurting this country, they’re taking their long held and mostly inaccurate beliefs and reacting. It’s like if I suddenly became owner of the Bears. The first move I might make would be to get rid of Cutler. But what if I took a moment and had experts sit before me giving me solid evidence that Cutler, in fact, is worth salvaging and the offensive line is failing to give him adequate protection? Would I not be derelict in my duties if I still cut Cutler?

A president must be objective. The inaugural address was horrific. But it’s what his base wanted to hear. It was a self-centered, isolationist, slightly modified version of his stump speech. And he gave it because he knew it’s what his base wanted to hear. And all that matters to him is making people happy so they will like him more: the ultimate popularity contest.

Placating is not presidential. Will this action or inaction serve to better secure or provide substantial benefit to the majority of the country? That is the question any president should be asking over and over. Instead, the current administration is simply placating to the minority of the country who elected him.

The US has been downgraded as a democracy from a full democracy to a flawed democracy and the clock is now 2.5 minutes to midnight. Certainly, neither of those changes can be wholly attributed to the new administration. However, the division that got us to this point most certainly can. Mr Trump started his campaign based on the idea the then current president was illegitimate. He saw the division and rift within the country that was mild but palpable. This was at a time when we needed unity and the Obama administration was making progress. But what did Mr Trump do? He stuck dynamite in the rift and then said he was the only one who could mend the crevasse.

We are the laughing stock of the civilized world. When you have a leader who doesn’t know or doesn’t care to know how international diplomacy works, mistakes can and are made on a routine basis. For some time China has been, quite literally, building islands in the South China Sea. By expanding their territory, China expands their 200 nautical mile zone of control, which is rapidly encroaching on the Philippines. The Obama administration was able to get China to cease creating new land and, for the last few months, no new islands have popped up in the South China Sea. There is now great international concern that with Mr Trump’s call to Taiwan and his apparent ignorance of the one China policy, China may resume its island building. I’m not smart enough to know where this all leads us but I am smart enough to know that international policy and diplomacy is a game of chess. Right now, the world is playing chess and Mr Trump is playing checkers.

Clearly, no one knows what this man will do, probably not even him. And how does his base, a base that so wants tax cuts and US made products, resolve the discrepancies? Or do they simply not understand that they’re going to get stuck with the import taxes in the form of higher cost of goods; they’re going to pay more for made in the USA products; and they’re not going to be the beneficiaries of tax cuts? Are they blinded by Mr Trump’s orange hue?

Maybe they’re simply not paying attention. It’s the only excuse his supporters to have to not be utterly terrified like the rest of us.

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Bryan is the founder of 2 Rights Make a Left. While obtaining his J.D., Bryan researched and wrote extensively on Capital Punishment, an issue that remains close to his heart to this day. He has spent the majority of his adult life involved in politics in some form or another. Bryan spends most of his time reading, writing and discussing all things politics. Bryan loves to travel and, if he had his way, would constantly be jetting off to another destination. The rest of his time is spent following his beloved Bears, Bulls and Cubbies.

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